Accomplished accounting executive Cathy Engelbert was appointed WNBA commissioner Wednesday.
“Cathy is a world-class business leader with a deep connection to women’s basketball, which makes her the ideal person to lead the WNBA into its next phase of growth,” said NBA commissioner Adam Silver in a statement. “The WNBA will benefit significantly from her more than 30 years of business and operational experience including revenue generation, sharp entrepreneurial instincts and proven management abilities.”
Engelbert, the current CEO of Deloitte, became the first woman ever to lead a Big Four accounting firm in the United States in 2015.
After her four-year term with Deloitte concludes, Engelbert will join the WNBA on July 17 and will report to Silver.
The WNBA’s 23rd season tips off on May 24.
Engelbert replaces Lisa Borders, who resigned as WNBA president in October. She is the first to hold the new title of commissioner.
“It is an absolute privilege to be joining the WNBA at such an exciting and important time in its history,” Engelbert said in a statement. “I see tremendous opportunity to bolster visibility for the sport of women’s basketball, empower the players, and enhance fan engagement. I look forward to using my business expertise and passion for basketball to promote women in the game and beyond, and to working with the teams and world-class athletes to help grow this league into a thriving business.”
Engelbert was the captain of the basketball and lacrosse teams as a senior at Lehigh University.
Her basketball coach at Lehigh was Muffet McGraw, a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Her father, Kurt, played for Hall of Fame coach Jack Ramsay at St. Joseph’s and was drafted by the Pistons in 1957.
–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)